Department of Climate and Space Sciences and Engineering in the College of Engineering at the University of Michigan

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Professor Samson’s teaching methods in NYT

Posted: April 10, 2014

Professor Samson’s teaching methods in NYT

Professor Perry Samson’s teaching methods were featured in an Education Life piece in the New York Times.

The article, titled “10 Courses with a Twist,” looked around the nation for courses that create buzz. Samson’s “Extreme Weather” was one of them. The course, taught by Samson and Professor Stephen Bougher, uses a class platform created by Samson.

According to the article, after the students log in to the platform, “They analyze data from the field and answer questions like: Where on this weather map would you expect wind speeds to be highest? Point and click. Got a dumb question? Type away — it’s anonymous — and Dr. Samson will post the answer. Confused? Press a designated button. If enough do, he’ll stop and explain. Oh, and all exams are ‘open book, open computer, call a friend.’ In life, says Dr. Samson, rarely will you be asked a question about science that you can’t look up.”

This class has grown from 40 to 165 in the past five years; Angell Hall seats only 110. “That is why the class is broadcast,” Dr. Samson told the Times. Students can participate from their dorm.

“It’s clear that these courses are different. They mess with the old models. And they give students an experience that might change how they think, what they care about or even how they spend their lives,” the Times states.

To read the full article, please click here.

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